Teens kick butts

Posted: Tuesday, April 01, 2003

More than 425,000 people in the United States will die this year from a tobacco-related disease. On April 2, "Kick Butts Day," kids from Juneau-Douglas High School are taking a stand to stop youth from getting hooked on deadly tobacco products. We know that 90 percent of smokers started using tobacco regularly at or before 19 years of age.

We sincerely hope Alaska legislators will take a stand with us and earmark funds from the settlement between the state attorneys general and the tobacco companies for tobacco prevention programs that have been proven to work. Alaska must act now to counteract the powerful advertising and promotional programs of the tobacco companies through school and community-based public education programs. Consider these facts: Each day, more than 2,000 kids become new regular, daily smokers; roughly one-third of them will die prematurely from a tobacco-related disease.

Kids are not just part of the problem, we're part of the solution. And the students from Juneau want tobacco companies to know that on Kick Butts Day and every day throughout the year, we're going to fight them every step of the way.

Ruth Simpson

Teens Against Tobacco Use Juneau Chapter

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